It's time to chronicle the life of a gun owner: me. First, a little background on my status. I'm probably a gun nut since I own a pair of shotguns, a couple handguns, and a few hunting rifles. Some of them are even (gasp) semi-automatic. Oh, the humanity. Oops, I almost forgot the crossbow. Those of you who are prone to fainting spells can relax--I also own a big, hernia-inducing gun safe, which I use to protect my corner of the planet from risk. Dive below the squiggedy thing for more scary gun stories...
How did I end up with such a vast armory? To put it bluntly, people died. Gun-owning relatives passed away from old age and I ended up as the somewhat reluctant heir to an odd collection of heirlooms. Not that I mind terribly, after all I'm one of the few shooters in the army of siblings, cousins, second cousins, third cousins, and "dang, she's cute--too bad this is a reunion" people who compose my generation. It was sort of natural that hand-me-down firearms would come my way.
Since the aforementioned relatives:
1. Owned guns
I suppose we could infer some nefarious link between their firearms ownership and their deaths, but we'd have to make the same link between underwear and death or toothbrushes and death (assuming my relatives brush and wear undies).
A more important question would be, "How has Dave survived 17,677 days around guns without anyone he knows getting shot?" I suppose the big, hernia-inducing gun safe has a little to do with it but I haven't always had a gun safe. But I do have a Dad, and he began teaching respect for firearms starting when I was maybe 5 years old. I also had a collection of disreputable uncles who taught me hunting safety. The long apprenticeship instilled in me some valuable habits, including using the same long apprenticeship technique with my own children.
What's a gun owner do every day? Just about everything but shoot.
Not exactly true: my gun fetish led me to buy a Wagner Power Painter soze I could shoot paint at railings. This summer I've spent a lot of time with the Power Painter in full auto mode while I sprayed down hordes of Commie Fence Pickets with lethal blasts of latex. One gets kicks where one can, I suppose.
I also spent a lot of time wantonly slinging lead projectiles at wildlife. For me, 4-ounce balls work best. Less than that and the bait won't stay down; more than that and I can't feel the fish bite. I know, I know: I should be going non-toxic.
I killed quite a few weeds this year. Again, it's the gun fetishy thing: a gallon of broad spectrum weed killer has this handy applicator pistol with a pump charging mechanism. Cock, spray, watch the dandelion die. Pump, spray, watch the dandelion die. Fun, but repetitive. I need minions.
I did do some hunting this year. Purr, my oh-so-spoiled housecat went missing and I used my predatory instincts to track him to the Humane Society shelter (Google makes hunting so much easier). It was more of a photo safari; since we got the cat back my wife hasn't stopped taking his picture.
Wait a minute: I did do some actual shooting with an actual firearm. Yep, I put several dozen crossbow bolts into a hay bale. Crossbows look all sinister & shit, but once you use one you quickly learn why they didn't survive the 17th century. It's a hard to cock, short range, awkward weapon that is fun in a masochistic kind of way. Bring the Salonpas patches for your lower back.
In between painting, weed killing, and cat chasing, I did manage a couple trips to the skeet range. I have to work at skeet, but my teenage son is a natural. I'd just as soon watch him shoot as do it myself (I wish he was as handy with the Power Painter).
That's the mundane life of a gun owner. No swagger, no bravado, no getting confrontational with the neighbors just 'cuz I'm packing heat. Better watch out though or I'll paint yer damn fence.